Wolff’s Law Is Concerned With Bone Adaptation
Wolff’s Law is a theory developed by German Anatomist/Surgeon Julius Wolff in the 19th century. This theory states that bone in a healthy person or animal will adapt to the loads it is placed under. This concept is often summed up as “form follows function”, meaning that cortical and trabecular bone architecture will adapt to the external forces or loads that are placed upon the bone.
If the bone is subjected to higher than normal loads or stresses, the internal architecture will change to better resist the added strain. This leads to increases in bone density, thickness, and mass. Conversely, if the bone is subjected to normal or lower than normal loads, the internal architecture will change to become more slender and less dense.
Wolff’s Law has been widely accepted in biology, anatomical science, and orthopaedics. In bioarchaeology, the law is used to study the adaptations made by past populations to their environment. By analyzing bones from archaeological remains, researchers can gain insight into the activity levels and health of past populations.
In addition to providing a better understanding of biomechanical adaptation in humans and animals, understanding Wolff’s Law can also be beneficial in the medical field. Understanding the physiological effects of forces and stresses on bones can help doctors diagnose and treat bone-related conditions.
In conclusion, Wolff’s Law is a theory that states that bone will adapt to the external loads it is placed under. This law is used to understand the biomechanical adaptations made by past populations, as well as to diagnose and treat bone-related conditions in the medical field.